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Stefan Fatsis

Stefan Fatsis began talking about "sports and the business of sports" with the hosts of All Things Considered in 1998. Since then he has been a familiar weekly voice on the games themselves and their financial, legal and social implications.

The author of three books, Fatsis' national bestseller, Word Freak: Heartbreak, Triumph, Genius, and Obsession in the World of Competitive Scrabble Players,chronicled the subculture of the game and his own rise from novice to expert-level player. A 10th anniversary edition of Word Freak will be published in the summer of 2011.

Fatsis is the author of A Few Seconds of Panic: A Sportswriter Plays in the NFL, the story of his Plimptonian journey as a training-camp placekicker for the Denver Broncos and life in the modern NFL, and Wild and Outside: How a Renegade Minor League Revived the Spirit of Baseball in America's Heartland. He has contributed to the anthologies Anatomy of Baseball, Top of the Order: 25 Writers Pick Their Favorite Baseball Player of All Time, The Enlightened Bracketologist and The Final Four of Everything.

Fatsis can be heard on Slate.com's weekly sports podcast "Hang Up and Listen." A former reporter for The Wall Street Journal, he has written for The New York Times, The Washington Post, Slate, Sports Illustrated, The Atlantic, The New Republic, Deadspinand other publications.

  • The World Cup in Brazil starts in less than a month, but it's the World Cup eight years from now that's grabbing headlines. Sportswriter Stefan Fatsis discusses the doubts around Qatar's World Cup.
  • The Philadelphia 76ers have lost their last 15 games. As sportswriter Stefan Fatsis notes, the team's losing streak has raised a question: Are some NBA teams trying to lose to get a better draft pick?
  • Sportswriter Stefan Fatsis talks to host Robert Siegel about the latest developments in the Dolphins bullying investigation. Carried out by attorney Ted Wells on behalf of the National Football League, the investigation found a "pattern of harassment" on the team, including texts and voicemail abuse targeting Jonathan Martin.
  • Last year, the popular, albeit unauthorized online version of Scrabble disappeared in a puff of lawsuits — leaving hundreds of thousands of word enthusiasts in the lurch. Now, the creators of Scrabulous have quietly relaunched a new version of the game — but Scrabble guru Stefan Fatsis says it won't cut it for the purists.
  • George Plimpton was a literary man about town who did it all, from co-founding The Paris Review to boxing (and dribbling and quarterbacking) with the pros. Now, in George, Being George, 200 friends, lovers and rivals detail Plimpton's remarkable exploits.
  • The NFL draft took place this past weekend. The Tennessee Titan's first-round pick, quarterback Vince Young, is rumored to have scored very poorly on the "Wonderlic Test," a type of intelligence-measuring test given to draft candidates. But the test has critics of its own.
  • David Wiegand, a 31-year-old mortgage underwriter from Portland, Ore., is the new national Scrabble champion. He was crowned in Reno, Nev., after winning three out of the five games in the final match against Panupol Sujjayakorn, 21, an economics student from Thailand.